Aussie UFC fighter Jimmy Crute has made his pitch to star on Fight Island, offering to throw down with two former champions and one of the company’s most hyped recruits.
News Corp Australia can reveal Crute has reached out to UFC president Dana White with a hit list of three potential light heavyweight opponents – American Luke Rockhold, Brazilian legend Mauricio ‘Shogun’ Rua and star Czech recruit Jiri Prochazka.
The rising Aussie striker has also told UFC matchmakers he is ready to fight “absolutely anyone” if it means competing at the secretive, and incredibly hyped, Fight Island venue.
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Ideally, Crute hopes to appear on the same card as fellow Aussie Robert Whittaker, with the pair both sharing the same Sydney management company.
Quizzed on Fight Island, Crute said: “Absolutely I’m down for that.
“Imagine sitting back 30 years from now, telling your grandkids how you were flown to a private island to fight for money.
“And I’ve got faith in Dana White, I think it’s going to get done.”
Now boasting three UFC appearances, Crute has drawn up an imposing hit list of potential rivals that includes former middleweight champ Rockhold, who is hinting at an Octagon return.
The other big name on his wish list is Rua, the UFC and Pride champion who, while now 38, has lost only one of his past six fights and remains inside the division’s top 15.
Crute has also offered to throw down with Prochazka, the Rizin light heavyweight champ who signed with the UFC in January.
Reports out the US in the past 24 hours suggest, however, that the Czech may instead be fighting Volkan Oezdemir.
“But I just want to fight the best guys I can,” Crute said.
“Obviously asking for Rockhold, that one is a wildcard.
“Who knows what could happen there?
“But with Shogun, the thing that entices me there is he’s the last Pride superstar I will ever be able to fight.
“He’s a guy I watched for so long and I don’t want to miss the opportunity to fight a legend.
“I’m certainly not going to sit here and tell you he’s past it or anything like that – the guy still has the ability to shut anyone’s lights out on any given night.
“And because of the enormous amount of respect I have for him, I don’t want to miss out on being a part of his resume … or him being a part of mine.”
Quizzed on Prochazka, Crute continued: “When he signed on, there was a lot of talk about him coming into the UFC and destroying everyone.
“So I’d love to welcome him to the big leagues.
“He’s a world champion and that would be a fun fight.”